MLS game #24: DCU 2 - FCD 2


A late goal from Andre Rocha brought Dallas even with 11 minutes to go - after Santino Quaranta put United up by one in the 69th minute - and the final whistle saw a 2-2 draw.  Dropping two points is made doubly frustrating by the fact that the Red Bulls topped Real Salt Lake 2-1 at Giants Stadium to leapfrog the Black-and-Red in the standings.  D.C. is now in fifth place in the Eastern Confernce. 

Oh, and we have a CONCACAF Champions League game in three days. 

A couple photos from the game and of the '98 team being honored at halftime can be found here

Post-game quotes below.

On the game:
It’s very disappointing, especially with the race as tight as it is. It’s been hard on guys because I keep talking about the consistency and as you can see the lineups that we’ve had to put out there are far from consistent. And having to sub when you’re told you’re going to get 20 minutes out of him... So it’s difficult for them but defensively some of the guys who have done well, I thought we were too forced; we gave away balls and gave away counterattacks. We created chances [but] couldn’t finish them. We were too easy to play against the other way. They countered on us. Louis [Crayton] had to come up big a couple of times; he had to come up with heroic efforts because of the fact that we gave away the ball too easily.
On Thabiso Khumalo:
It’s his first game. He’s been with us for a week. He came in a little nervous but once he found the game he actually did really well. I talked to him at half time and fitness is going to be a thing to get since he hasn’t played in a while. But for his first game I thought he did extremely well.
On injuries:
I’m glad the guys who were in didn’t get re-injured or anything. We have to turn around and do it again on Tuesday.
On his feelings after Quaranta scored to put United up:
My feeling was I wish I didn’t put Luci [Emilio] in because I was worried about him getting hurt. And that’s no way to go into a game, coaching-wise. It’s very difficult right now looking and knowing you have impact players sitting on the bench and having to wait to put them in. There are situations in a game when you want to be reactionary of the situation but you can’t. So it’s difficult right now and that’s why I’m encourage to get those guys in playing and hopefully we can push the minutes next time.
On looking ahead:
You have to take it one game at a time. We weren’t really thinking about CONCACAF at this point. We were just trying to get into the playoffs so we put all our focus into this game but unfortunately we didn’t get the three points we wanted.
On the game:
We needed to get three points tonight. We just feel really let down. They were killing us. We still had chances but they had chances and they finished them off so you have to give them credit but it’s unacceptable. It’s getting to the point now that we have to hold ourselves accountable. [There were] too many mistakes. It has to get better from everybody. We’re not too happy.
On being concerned with not getting three points:
We are concerned. Again it was a good effort, we are doing our best but its just the little things you know, the little let downs that in this league are going to hurt you now. We gave away two points, when you’re winning with ten minutes to go you got to see the game out, if you don’t do that then you’re not going to succeed.
On his thoughts after getting the second goal:
I thought we were going to get another one. I thought the game was going to open up a little bit and we should have finished the game out but we didn’t unfortunately. What are you going to do? It’s part of the game. It’s a one-goal game you have to see it out and we didn’t do that.
On the game:
There were good players shooting from long distance and we took an early goal. We should have [scored] but unfortunately it happened to us. We wanted to win this game tonight, knowing the fact that New York is on our backs but unfortunately we ended up with a tie. But I believe that everyone in here is responsible enough to know that we have to prepare ourselves for the remaining games if we want to get to the playoffs.
On Dallas’ second goal:
After the ball came from the right side I saw that when he broke through on the right side I knew very well that he was going to play the ball across the goal but I anticipated him doing that and unfortunately the ball went past me and my defender couldn’t stop it from going in the goal.
On not getting three points:
When we scored the second goal obviously I thought we would have won the game today knowing the fact that New York and us have the same points but unfortunately we drew the game. Right now like I said in San Jose, if we want to get to the playoffs we have to start right now and to concentrate and focus on our game because right now New York is ahead of us and we don’t have the luxury in our favor to draw or lose any more games we have to put ourselves together to get to the playoffs.
On getting a draw:
I thought the longer the game went on I thought the more we had to do, because we were so stretched out there both ways. [It looked] almost like a basketball game going back and forth at some points during the game. It’s unfortunate that as much work as we did in the game we gave up goal late to lose two points, so I’m pretty disappointed about that.
On FC Dallas:
They have some very good athletes and some fast players. And they have a big guy in Kenny Cooper so to have a big guy and a real fast guy is a pretty good combination. They were a handful tonight. They have one of the fastest players in the league in [Dominic] Oduro. They definitely have a lot of weapons and for the most part I think we did pretty good and Louis [Crayton] came out big. He was huge tonight but we will have to play the tape. We have a big game on Tuesday. We definitely have some things we need to fix.
On the draw:
I think it really showed a lot of character coming into this environment, this is a very tough place to come and play and every time they made a substitute they were bringing a better player out. I think we all recognized they played really well. I think again, our guys have had some difficult results but [were] giving us everything we asked for so I’m very pleased with their character, never giving up in the end.
On United’s second goal:
On their second goal, I think there was a foul by the sideline that wasn’t called but then the player did a fantastic job taking the ball to the baseline and giving the player wonderful service. We might have slowed down a little bit, people might have thought it was going out but we all should know to play to the [final] whistle.
On D.C. United:
I think D.C. was vulnerable for the counter attack. I think you saw that early with the first goal and with some good opportunities. The keeper made some good saves, especially during the second half when Jeff Cunningham hit the ball with his left foot, the keeper made a good save. It was just a little later that they came down and scored. Again, I think that things haven’t gone well for them even before and this was a big step for us, getting a point against a team that is this good.
On Kenny Cooper:
He just has a twisted ankle. He’s such a competitor and he wanted to stay on the field but I thought it was very important that we put people out there who can run and can battle for the fifty-fifty balls. He needed to come off and I think it was the right call.
On United’s second goal:
They got the second goal to go ahead and the ball may or may not have been out of bounds. I mean it’s questionable, there’s always going to be calls like that. The referees sometimes see it, sometimes they don’t. It’s definitely frustrating because we felt that maybe we were starting to get the ball a little bit more and then they hit us like that. It’s tough and I think the mentality of our team is to get the ball back as soon as possible and go for the win and we got a goal back and again a couple of chances at the end and maybe it would have been a different outcome.
On coming out of the game:
We trust our coaches and I respect their decision. It was bothering me but as much as I wanted to stay I think they made they smart decision by bringing me off and getting on some fresh legs. In the end we got a good result so I’m happy.
On their play:
I think it’s simply great that out team can just start playing. I came in towards the end to at least try and help my team as much as I can and do what is needed as long as I can help the team out. We came out great.